Clinical Analytics, Meaningful Use , and Late-Binding

Meaningful use us the process of using certified electronic health record technology (EHR) to improve the quality, efficiency, safety and reduce health disparities. Meaningful use through Clinical Analytics also involves engaging patients and their family, improving care coordination, population, and public health and maintaining privacy and security of patent information. Meaningful use also helps health practitioners maintain the privacy and security of patient information. Health researchers and organizations constantly seek to improve meaningful use and the hope is that ultimately, meaningful use compliance will result in better clinical outcomes, improved population health outcomes, increased transparency and efficiency, empowered individuals and more robust research data on health systems.

The priorities of Meaningful Use is requiring greater interoperability and data sharing, there is now much greater opportunity to aggregate data at a community level and have an even broader data set than just the EHR to mine for clinical intelligence. One benefit from clinical analytics, besides improved care coordination, is the ability to perform queries and apply analytical tools to those data that were not previously available. The five health outcomes policy priorities included in meaningful use are:

  • Improve quality, safety, efficiency, and reduce health disparities
  • Engage patients and families
  • Improve care coordination
  • Improve population and public health
  • Ensure adequate privacy and security protections for personal health information
  • Meaningful Use Analytics

Obviously, the reporting requirements for meaningful use can make good use of clinical analytics tools, but some of this reporting capability is also useful when participating in new payment models such as accountable care organizations (ACOs). Although not directly called out in meaningful use, lowering costs is a high priority and part of the overarching Triple Aim. I cannot imagine succeeding in a truly transformed healthcare system without having the clinical and business intelligence tools that will allow for targeted interventions and not only a retrospective look via claims data, but the real-time capabilities of an Enterprise Data Warehouse (EDW) with robust analytic and reporting functionality.

A great solution for healthcare organizations and practitioners to find a solution for their data is improved clinical analysis through late-binding. A foundation of the Late-Binding solution is critical to enable healthcare organizations to automate extraction, aggregation, and integration of clinical, financial, administrative, patient experience, and regularly measures reporting. Once Late-Binding is installed, healthcare organizations can apply advanced healthcare analytics to organize and measure clinical, patient safety, cost, and patient satisfaction processes and outcomes. Basic meaningful use measures are best provided by EMR vendors. Health Catalyst provides data warehousing and analytics solutions that can significantly streamline and enhance meaningful use reporting in many ways:

  • Health Catalyst’s data warehouse can significantly streamline the automation of gathering and reporting measures.  Many health systems have a mixture of automated and manual systems because the data does not reside in one source.  A data warehouse can help significantly streamline that process.  By focusing on decreasing abstraction time to support regulatory requirements.  Health Catalyst also works to eliminate manual processes and errors and increase the timeliness of the reporting.
  • Health Catalyst data warehouse can be particularly helpful in the growing mixed EMR environment.  As many health systems merge or combine systems, multi-EMR specific reporting becomes extremely challenging, requiring duplicate processes and manual interventions. The data warehouse can be a point of source system data consolidation to significantly streamline Meaningful Use data aggregation and reporting.

It takes understanding and a willingness to extend resources into such research and probably the purchase of a software for an organization to fully achieve these goals. Healthcare organizations and health practitioners like doctors and researcher and even healthcare stakeholders need to come together to make a decision on how they can move their organization forward and reach a point of competitive advantage using modern healthcare software.